Our Creative Space for Glory

White feathers adorn her layered cape, shoulder to floor. Behind her bent head, a white sheet several stories tall hangs from the auditorium ceiling. “This might be a bit over the top,” I whisper to my husband.

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One of my favorite artists has taken the stage. She writes and sings with a desperate fullness few songwriters capture. She’s ruthlessly honest in her art and pushes the drama’s edge in her music genre, costumes, and set design. I love how she worships God as herself.

As the music begins, shadows of silk aerial artists mesmerize us. Then her voice—it rings clearly, simply. With every breath she crescendos the blessed announcement: “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear.”

I experience what I can only call glory. The unabashed soul-stirring act of praise.

With each new song, she pushes the bounds with movement, style, and energy. I wonder how she has such energy on an opening night. She isn’t doing her art for anyone in the audience. She is praising the Lord.

She brings her whole self to the stage—to an auditorium half-filled. She sings and moves as if no one is here but her and God.

As she ends, she says, “Know this: if nothing else—You are loved, just as you are.” She understands the thrill of hope. She couldn’t embody it if she didn’t. I feel myself tremble with the same longing.

My heart is ready to be cracked wide open this Christmas.

I am ready for God’s glory. I long to worship him in my life and my art. I don’t want to hold back. I want to be salt and light, a city on the hill, wherever God places me in whatever time He grants.

A few days later I get a chance to lift my voice with the church band on a Sunday morning. I choose not to overprepare. Instead, I pray, “Lord, help me to do my best. I bring my whole self.” As “Angels We Have Heard On High” spills from my lips and into the air, I realize my hands freely move with the music. Today I will not restrain them.

Freely, I glory in the creative space my Lord grants me this Christmas.

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As I write this, I look across the room to see a white feather on my wood floor in a dusty corner. Glory is not just an epiphany of hope, it’s freedom in Christ the Lord. He is not about stages or full rooms, but quiet corners too. Jesus came as gentle majesty into such a place: the dusty corner of Bethlehem, far from the world’s gaze. What an understated over the top act of compassion, pushing the bounds of comprehension, time, and space.

We celebrate Christ’s entry into our space: fully God and fully man. Let us bring our whole selves to worship the One who thought enough of us to bend low in love. The One who makes the ultimate unexpected entrance, announced with angelic song, born into the strange comforts of straw and human hearts. He lifts us into His radiant splendor.

Shout hallelujah!

Tremble.

Sit still.

Dance in His silent night.

Step into glory’s space.

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December 11, 2018